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4 Tips for Reducing Nonprofit Staff Turnover

Organizations across the country face high employee turnover, but the social-good sector struggles more than most. Nonprofits face an average of 19% annual turnover, far higher than the all-industry average of 12%. Constant employee turnover creates both financial and logistical challenges as you work to meet the needs of your beneficiaries and the requirements of your funders. Thankfully, there are ways to smooth the transitions and set your organization up for success.

Make a Plan

When a key team member leaves, the disruption can lead to chaos and the loss of critical knowledge, or it can be an inconvenience that is handled by a smooth transition. The difference is in the planning. Organizations without transition planning often see a cascading effect of resignations due to the stress and burnout experienced by the other staff. Developing and implementing a transition plan helps you keep things running and can slow the spread of turnover.

This plan should include information about each position in your organization. Documenting the roles and responsibilities of every job helps you cover critical tasks during the transition, understand what skills are essential in the hiring process, and know how to train your new team member. Part of your transition plan should include cross-training employees in multiple responsibilities. This redundancy will enable you to cover critical tasks, especially when facing unforeseen turnover. In-depth internal documentation also provides a continuity of information that smooths transitions.

Focus on Retention

The best way to mitigate the costs of employee turnover is prevention. There will always be some turnover, voluntary or involuntary, but there are ways to encourage your employees to stay. The first strategy is to hire the right people. Expertise matters, but so does hiring people who fit with the goals and culture of your organization. Employees who embrace your mission will be more engaged and fulfilled in their jobs.

Once you’ve hired the right people, train them well. Quality training gives team members both the skills and the confidence to succeed in their positions. The best organizations know that training is never complete. Provide your employees chances for professional development and expanded skills.

A common reason that employees leave any job is burnout. Help your employees maintain their physical and emotional health by balancing workloads between team members, providing clear expectations and adequate support, and respecting your employee’s work-life balance.

Invest in Talent

Social-good organizations are notorious for trying to do more with fewer resources. Many nonprofits even believe that cutting overhead means that they will have more financial resources to pour into their programs. The reality is that investing in your employees increases your effectiveness as an organization because your team members will be well trained, invested in your mission, and have the tools they need to succeed.

Empower Staff with the Right Technology

For social-good organizations struggling with high staff turnover, the right technology can make a big difference by reducing the learning curve for new staff members and ensuring continuity when a current staff member leaves.

With software that’s designed specifically for social-good providers with multiple programs, staff save time and energy by:

  • Streamlining tasks and workflows

  • Becoming proficient with technology more quickly

  • Increased and improved internal communication

  • Increasing automation

  • Easily accessing real-time client information from other departments in a shared solution

  • Simplifying internal and external reporting

These efficiencies enable new staff to get up to speed more quickly, allow existing staff to manage the transition more smoothly, and provide time-saving resources to reduce burnout.

SureImpact is a purpose-built impact management platform that is designed for social-good providers by social-good providers. SureImpact provides a data collection and impact reporting infrastructure that is easy to use and connects staff across your organization in order to deliver person-centered care. SureImpact’s simple and collaborative case management and outcome tracking tools are designed to help nonprofits manage, measure, and communicate their social impact while also increasing data capacity for their team members and ensuring data continuity during staff transition.

To learn more about SureImpact, check out our Quick Product Tour.


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